Book Review: Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

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Shatter Me
Shatter Me #1
Tahereh Mafi
Genre: YA Dystopia
I have a curse
I have a gift

I am a monster
I'm more than human

My touch is lethal
My touch is power

I am their weapon
I will fight back

Juliette hasn’t touched anyone in exactly 264 days.

The last time she did, it was an accident, but The Reestablishment locked her up for murder. No one knows why Juliette’s touch is fatal. As long as she doesn’t hurt anyone else, no one really cares. The world is too busy crumbling to pieces to pay attention to a 17-year-old girl. Diseases are destroying the population, food is hard to find, birds don’t fly anymore, and the clouds are the wrong color.

The Reestablishment said their way was the only way to fix things, so they threw Juliette in a cell. Now so many people are dead that the survivors are whispering war – and The Reestablishment has changed its mind. Maybe Juliette is more than a tortured soul stuffed into a poisonous body. Maybe she’s exactly what they need right now.

Juliette has to make a choice: Be a weapon. Or be a warrior.
Weird. Writing's weird.

I have a diary. I write in it every day. I have written in it for years. But you would be hard put to chronologically make sense of things despite the dates written on top of every entry, for I write in every available notebook that I have. What happens to be within my reach. I do occasionally switch tones and languages but I mainly write in English especially when I am feeling particularly like swearing. I don't do that a lot. It might give you an insight of who I am but I am not sure if you could make ends of the entries.

Which is what I felt about reading the first chapters of Shatter Me – I was slightly confused because the writing was new to me. Not as nosebleed-inducing as the first time I was reading Tolkien but just as blurring…? 

No, that’s not right. 

The first few chapters gave me an insight into what someone who was like Juliette –shunned, feared, imprisoned, frightened of herself, alone- was like. Every word was hyper-focused on her that I got this tunnel-like vision of what it was to be inside her head.

But I noticed. I noticed how, when she began again to interact ‘normally’ with others that the writing shifted to what could be considered as more comfortable for YA readers, reflecting the changes that were being wrought in her. How refreshing was it to be out of your own maelstrom of thoughts, counting everything so as to keep your head occupied? Who needed walls when your mind was your own personal Azkaban?

And boy did I notice the use of metaphors and hyperboles. How could you even contemplate to use “for a long time” when you could use “the sun was revolving around the moon when he answered”. I liked it.

I never thought I could like Shatter Me. I avoided it like the plague; partly because it was causing a mania among the blogging community and because I was like What the hell is this? But, apparently, I was wrong. I really liked it in spite of the weirdness in the first half, you know, the writing. I could probably say that there was something unique about this story. 

There was. However, I couldn’t help but thought about XMEN. If anybody asks, my powers would be telekinesis and teleportation.
Ayanami Faerudo

Sidenote
Warner is no Jackal. Jackal (and Sarren) was brilliantly crazy. Warner's sick.

Next Big YA Book Event

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Calling all authors!

If you have ever hashtagged #amwriting, #MSWL, or #IWantToBePublishedSoBadlyMyEyeballsMightPop, than pay attention.

From September 17th through October 1st, Hipso Media Publishing and Jenny from Supernatural Snark will be hosting the 

‘Next Big YA Book Event’

Why is this good news for #amwriters?

Here’s how the event works. 

Most publishers work exclusively with agents, which makes it difficult (more like close to impossible) for up-and-coming writers to get their work seen. Well, Hipso Media Publishing will be opening their doors to all YA writers who dream of traditional publication, but can’t seem to catch a break. Writers who have mountainous ideas, along with an actual mountain of rejection letters. Hipso wants to pick one of those writers, and treat them like the literary rock star they are, showering them in every publishing perk someone of their caliber deserves:
  • Publishing contract with a generous royalty program
  • Custom cover from Seedlings Design
  • Candace Book Blog Book Tour
  • Exclusive front-page podcast on AuthorsOnTourLive, iReadBooksRadio and iHeartRadio (which gets an average of more than 1 million hits a year)
  • Novel as an eBook on all major retailers – Kindle, Nook, iBooks, Kobo, around the world
  • A featured post on Supernatural Snark
  • Awesome book swag, and more…
Once the winning manuscript is picked, Jenny from Supernatural Snark (Owner of Seedlings Design) will work with the author to create a custom cover that will be sure to shout, “NEXT BIG YA BOOK”. And then she’ll do a featured post on Supernatural Snark, to make sure the world hears.

No agents, hoops, or hassles. The only criteria are that your YA manuscript be finished, you must believe it’s great, and it must not already be published somewhere else.

Here’s the link to the submissions page and contact info: http://www.hipsomedia.com/the-next-big-ya-book/

Good luck and happy writing!
Ayanami Faerudo

Waiting on Wednesday: The Conspiracy of Us by Maggie Hall

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Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine. This meme spotlights upcoming releases that I'm eagerly anticipating.
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The Conspiracy of Us
Maggie Hall
Expected Publication: January 13, 2015
Genre: YA Mystery, Thriller
To fight her destiny as the missing heir to a powerful and dangerous secret society, sixteen-year-old Avery West must solve an ancient puzzle in a deadly race across Europe. Forbidden love and code-breaking, masked balls and explosions, destiny and dark secrets collide in this romantic thriller, in the vein of a YA DaVinci Code.

Avery West's newfound family can shut down Prada at the Champs-Elysees when they want to shop in peace, and can just as easily order a bombing when they want to start a war.

They are part of a powerful and dangerous secret society called the Circle of Twelve, and Avery is their missing heir. If they discover who she is, some of them will want to use her as a pawn. Some will want her dead.

To thwart their plans, Avery must follow a trail of clues from the landmarks of Paris to the back alleys of Istanbul and through a web of ancient legends and lies. And unless she can stay one step ahead of beautiful, volatile Stellan, who knows she’s more than she seems, and can decide whether to trust mysterious, magnetic Jack, she may be doomed after all.
That's a beautiful cover and the book sounds exciting. It reminds me of The Immortal Descendants by April White and the Precious Stone Trilogy by Kirsten Gier except The Conspiracy of Us doesn't have time travel.
Ayanami Faerudo

Book Blitz: Dia of the Dead by Brit Brinson {Excerpt + Giveaway}

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Happy Book Birthday to Brit Brinson's DIA OF THE DEAD! Continue for an excerpt and playlist, and enter the international giveaway.


Dia of the Dead
Dia of the Dead #1
Brit Brinson
Publication Date: September 16, 2014
Genre: YA Paranormal
Protecting Romero High from all things supernaturally spooky as Dia Muerto is a tough gig for sixteen-year-old Dia Summers, but it’s nothing compared to protecting the ones she loves from real, live—well, formerly alive—zombies. Unlike the zombies that shambled around on set, the real deal don’t follow a script.

At the majorly important birthday party of her boss’ daughter, Dia experiences a series of potentially career-ruining social disasters. Before the night is over, she soon discovers that the possible cancellation of her show isn’t her biggest worry.

Armed with what they can find around Bixby Studios, Dia and her friends band together to find out why everyone they know has begun popping up as gray-skinned, black-eyed, limb-nomming zombies. With the ailment spreading, time is running out before Dia is swept up in Hollywood’s latest trend.

PLAYLIST

The following are songs Brit Brinson listened to while working on Dia of the Dead:

Da Rockwilder by Method Man & Redman (perfect for action scenes)

Stole Your Heart by One Direction

Shake Your Rump by the Beastie Boys

Bad Boy by Big Bang

Glad You Came by The Wanted

You Da One by Rihanna
About the Author

Brit Brinson was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio. After time away to attend college and graduate school, she returned home. When she’s not writing, she enjoys doing nerdy stuff with her friends. She lives for all things horror, paranormal, and sci-fi.

Dia of the Dead is her first novel.
Ayanami Faerudo

Book Blitz: Dark Roses Boxed Set

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Dark Roses
Eight New York Times, USA Today or Best Selling Authors of Paranormal Romance
Authors: P.T. Michelle, Trisha Leigh, Anthea Sharp, Lola St. Vil, Terah Edun, Erica Cope, Cameron Jace, Sarra Cannon
Publication date: September 15, 2014
Genres: Paranormal, Romance
Eight bestselling authors. Eight stories of paranormal romance. Eight series to take your breath away. From kick-ass cheerleaders to leaders of the fae, these teenage girls are out to save their worlds, one unforgettable adventure at a time. The only thing standing in their way – love, loss & a little magic.

From NYT & USA Today Bestselling author, P.T. MICHELLE – BRIGHTEST KIND OF DARKNESS — Nara Collins is an average sixteen-year-old, with one exception: every night she dreams the events of the following day. Due to an incident in her past, Nara avoids using her special gift to change fate…until she dreams a future she can’t ignore.

From USA Today bestselling author LYLA PAYNE, writing as TRISHA LEIGH – WHISPERS IN AUTUMN — For sixteen years, Althea has been alone in her ability to feel emotion, to think for herself, and on occasion, light things on fire. The autumn brings a boy named Lucas to town, along with unwanted scrutiny from the alien race of Others that rule Earth, and if she wants to live to see winter Althea will have to stop hiding–and start fighting.

From USA Today bestselling author, ANTHEA SHARP – FEYLAND: THE DARK REALM — Jennet Carter never thought hacking into her dad’s new epic-fantasy sim-game would be so exciting… or dangerous. But behind the interface, dark forces lie in wait, leading her toward a battle that will test her to her limits and cost her more than she ever imagined.

From bestselling author, LOLA ST. VIL – GUARDIANS: THE GIRL — The prophecy says “should human and angel unite, it will bring the end of the human race…” Yet Emmy & Marcus can’t fight their feelings. All they want is to be together; the only way for us to survive is to keep them apart…

From bestselling author, TERAH EDUN – WITCHES FINISH FIRST — Witch. Daughter. Queen. Katherine is second-in-line in a provincial town ruled by her coven. But she’s about to learn that the hierarchy of witches first, fae second, and humans last isn’t set in stone…at least not in high school.

From bestselling author, ERICA COPE – LARK — An ordinary girl. An ordinary life. Until her Elfin heritage comes to light. Mia Carrington discovers she’s the heir to the kingdom of Álfheimr in the most unexpected way. But it’s the Dark Elves that pursue her that have her world turned upside down, because they will let no one and nothing stop them from claiming her.

From bestselling author, CAMERON JACE – PENTIMENTO — On her seventeenth birthday she comes of age. Her seventeen birthday is also the day the Beasts come for her. After the destruction of the world these rulers of new America provide safety and services to human in exchange for one new teenage girl every week. They call them the Brides, and they never come back.

From bestselling author, SARRA CANNON – BEAUTIFUL DEMONS –
Harper Madison’s inability to control her extraordinary powers has gotten her kicked from countless foster homes. Shadowford Home for Girls and Peachville High are her last chance. But when evidence ties her to the gruesome murder of a Demons cheerleader, Harper discovers this small town has a big secret.
He runs a hand through his hair, but the waves fall right back to their disheveled state. The glow from the torch reflects off his hair, causing its already coppery hue to glow like embers. He is actually quite attractive. His features are angular but in a perfect sort of way. His skin is surprisingly freckle free considering the auburn color of his hair. He actually has a better tan than me. His pretty green eyes are framed by dark eyelashes most women would kill for. And he has full, kissable pink lips.

He’s actually sort of swoon-worthy.

A vision of Grey pops in my head and I feel guilty. Which is ridiculous for so many reasons. What the heck, Mia? I mentally slap the boy-crazy girl out of my head. Greyson and I are just friends, and this Jacoby character, regardless of how dreamy he may appear, is aiding and abetting my captivity. Not exactly the kind of guy you want to bring home to meet mom.

“Mia, I'm not going to bite.” He gently pats the spot right next to him again. I finally concede and sit down as far away from him as possible, which isn’t far on the narrow cot, and take my less than appealing breakfast while trying to appear grateful. I actually am a little hungry. I take a small nibble of the toast and it's not terrible, so I take another bite.

“There. That is much better. I would hate to see you starve to death.”

“Why do you care anyway?” I finally say.

“Well, let's just say that I don't agree with keeping anyone, especially pretty girls, against their will. I would much rather they make the choice to be in my company, but since you are here anyway, I figure we better make the most of it.” He winks at me again.

“Is there something in your eye?”

“No, why?” He asks with a bemused expression.

“Then stop winking at me. It’s annoying.”

“Beautiful and feisty,” he mutters to himself. “I might never leave.”

Ayanami Faerudo
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